BNHA Hippodrome Theater
National Register of Historic Places
Shaping a Monumental City: The City’s Growth in the 20th Century
Charles Street Byway
Performing Arts Venue
12 N Eutaw St
Baltimore, Maryland 21201
Baltimore’s beloved Hippodrome Theater is today home to the France-Merrick Performing Arts Center. Built in 1914, the Hippodrome was the city’s premier premiere vaudeville theater of Baltimore and later become one of the city’s first motion picture theaters (and the last to operate in downtown). Vacant through the 1990s, the Hippodrome was thoroughly renovated in the early 2000s. In 2004, the curtain rose on the new center comprised of a lavishly renovated Hippodrome Theater and several adjacent historic buildings. The center hosts Broadway shows, concerts, and special events throughout the year.
The Hippodrome Theater is significant not only for its history of performing arts in Baltimore but also for its architecture. Designed by Thomas White Lamb, one of the finest theater architects of the period, the building’s design demonstrates a mastery of scale, proportion, and exterior and interior decoration and detailing. The theater’s 2,300-seat auditorium is a curvaceous composition of ovals, domes, and coffers, and retains the original lavish Baroque decoration. The Hippodrome was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 2000.